tv Politics Public Policy Today CSPAN January 12, 2015 11:00am-1:01pm EST
] >> so thank you all for being here. cherie, we heard secretary clinton just talk a bit about the importance of women's participation in the economy and certainly the role that women entrepreneurs have in starting small businesses and growing them. their potential is largely untapped around the world. you have a foundation now that has been doing extraordinary work in training and mentoring women in entrepreneurship. give us a sense of what difference that makes and how you partner with others in a collaborative way to ensure that this work can go on. >> well, the difference, of course, it makes if you can get women, as secretary clinton has
said, to participate in the formal economy is vast, both for the economy itself and its growth but also for the impact it has on their families and their communities. research shows time and time again that women reinvest all the money that they make back into the home and into the wider community, so it makes good business sense to help women participate. as for the foundation, what we have tried to do is to work with small and medium-sized entrepreneurs in developing countries and in particular in africa, the middle east, and asia to help them expand and grow their business partly by giving them capacity training, partly by giving them opportunities for mentoring, and particularly by harnessing the power of technology. and i think one of the ways we've done that the most successfully is by not trying to
do it all ourselves but by partnering with others, that's other nonprofit associations working in this area and also with the private sector and with government, and a great example of that is our mentoring platform which was highlighted, in fact, in the international council of women business leaders last report. in relation to that what we do is we team up, thanks to google, we have a global mentoring platform which now operates in 55 different countries, and we've reached now nearly 1,500 women mentees and we match them with men and women mentors from across the world. so how do we find our mentees? by partnering with other organizations such as the u.s. state department and other ngos who are already working in this area and asking them do they have women on their programs who would benefit from a consistent year-long support of two hours a month over the internet from somebody who tries to help them grow and expand their business?
where do we find our mentors? well, people come along and apply to join, but we also have great business partnerships. for example, the partnership that we have with anne and bank of america where bank of america at the moment i think we've got 125 mentors from bank of america, and as well as the individual partnerships on the platform, we also support the women so that they can talk to each other. we have a network of information and advice, and we've recently entered into a great partnership with facebook where facebook has now got a special area on facebook where they're giving our women mentees training on how to use facebook to expand and grow the marketing of their businesses, but i think anne will agree that it's been very interesting to us not only to see the impact this has made on the women themselves where overwhelmingly over 99% of the
women mentees in this last intake increased their confidence. 94% of them gained in their business knowledge, and 84% of them got new business opportunities because of the mentoring platform, but what was interesting in the bank of america is 100% of the bank of america mentors also found that they grew in their own knowledge and confidence and experience of the world, which i think made bank of america rather happy. but interestingly, and we heard this today, too, in the council today, often many women set up businesses, but then many of those businesses do fail, and 27% of our mentees with bank of america said that had it not been for the advice and support of their mentor, their business might have gone under. so i think there's a real need here to support women in this way, and the great thing about the internet is it means i can
be sitting in london or in new york or in mumbai and i can be supporting a woman in kenya or in israel or in indonesia, and so really it's a resource for the world. >> thank you, cherie. and you know, mentoring and training are extremely important, but i remember meeting with some young entrepreneurs whom you had worked with in a project, and they all had developed a terrific business strategy, and they wanted to really start their businesses, and access to capital is not so easy. and, anne, you run a very big bank or you close to run that bank.
i'm wondering how can financial institutions be more creative in responding to this need? and it's not just the world over without the united states, it includes the united states as well. i remember traveling with hillary clinton once when a woman in desperation said to her, we have a terrific business plan. we know this is going to work. we've got a niche, but we can't get that first loan, and then she said, the best ideas die in bank parking lots. so, anne, how do we create a way to solve some of this enormous challenge? >> we certainly don't want people to die in bank parking lots so let's see if he can resurrect that a little bit. well, of course, we give -- banks give -- at their best are like a financial transportation system.
they should be helping economies move forward through the movement of money, and it is true that for the most part you're giving small business loans or commercial loans to people that have a track record. the real difference is when you don't have a track record, what do you do? and that would be true in the u.s. and outside the u.s. one mechanism -- there are a couple mechanism we've tried to use, and we're not alone. i think the financial services industry is getting a little more savvy about this, and that would be through the use of cdfis. so cdfis are community development financial institutions. they don't require the same amount of history in terms of making money or a game plan, but they do require sort of a hands-on approach. banks give money to cdfis. cdfis in turn give money to those that have a lower credit rating or perhaps no credit
rating along with some education. so the banks are sort of fueling this. they provide a below market lending rate to the cdfis along with grant dollars. the cdfis in turn can give to these early stage very small companies from microfinance, very small loans, up through $50,000, $60,000, up to $200,000. and it can be for housing or more specifically for small business. we have done a billion dollars' worth of this kind of lending over the last several years but we haven't focused our attention on women small businesses, very small businesses, as much as we could have, so in the last year or two what we've done is in the u.s. taken a very specific amount of money, $10 million worth of lending, and worked with elizabeth street capital, tory burch, in trying to find these women and get the movement going, and we're beginning to work with cherie outside the u.s. through the calvert
foundation. again, it's a partnership. so it's not one thing. it's a bank, a nonprofit, and a third party, a government sort of exercise to try to get some money flowing into these small businesses. very small businesses. >> so ofra, let's move to another kind of challenge, all in the world of growing small and medium-sized businesses, which we know, as the secretary said, are that great accelerator of growth in economies. a couple years ago i visited the jasmine project in tel aviv, which was working to support arab and jewish small and medium-sized businesses run by women in israel. i later learned, i didn't know on my first visit, but i later learned that you have been instrumental in its leadership, and it was a project that was, indeed, making a difference.
so why did you get involved? you're a top businesswoman. why did you get involved in being so catalytic in making this project succeed, and do you think that businesswomen and others in business, because we need all the good men in this, can contribute to the efforts of peace and security? >> well, i have a few minutes to talk about really my most important subject that i deal with, which is business, to talk about israel small businesses and peace. so excuse me if i will not cover all of it in three minutes. but i'll just say -- >> you can go a little longer. it's a very important topic. >> okay. but i just -- you know, it starts really with the fact that i realized, like all of you, in
many ways i was privileged. i was privileged to really be given the chance to be part of a great business, which my grandmother, by the way, started, and it's really -- i thought it's obvious. it's obvious that i'll get a chance. i thought it's obvious that i was asked to work really, really hard, and if i'll prove myself, i'll get any job i want in the world, by the way. and the first opportunity was here in the u.s. i was accepted to work. so it really starts with giving chance to others and to me especially, and really when i got and i became the chair for our business, i thought it's obvious, it's obvious that if you work hard and if you do everything you can, you get what you thrive. the first interview i gave as a chair i was asked, how is it to be a woman in the business world? i said, what do you mean?
and then i really realized when i looked at the numbers, i was the only chairperson in tel aviv in top 100 companies. so in the beginning it was really nice to be by myself, really. but then i really realized, it's not the case, and i really decided to use the fact that i am influential and, yes, it's not always that nice, to do -- really to help other women become part of the business world, and for us in the business world really, it's all about the bottom line. so it is a great business case, and look at the numbers and you all students here, it's very easy. there are articles, it's a great business case we buy, so it makes sense to invest in women, but still i am involved in this issue for the last five years, and to move the needle, it is difficult because like every business that we start,
entrepreneurship, you need a vision, a very detailed program to make it happen. so i am on this journey. i will share with you some of my experience, and lots of it is really not yet shown in numbers. so within our business, any business, there we have expenses. one of them is really salaries or how much we pay. it's what we ask, you know, in any board meeting, and the other one is how much money we spend on buying. so on those two parts of the p
and l, really we can influence not only how much we pay but who do we pay for. so how many women do we have in our workforce? i started to measure it and to really i thought if i'll just tell the organization i want 50/50 women on the management and 50/50 women in everything we do, that it will move and it will happen. no, it doesn't. so it is again about education. it's about really students. it's about the next generation. it is about doing it together, the whole management, men and women. so this is within the organization, and then it's about, okay, how much money we spend on procurement and buying. that's the only question i knew how to answer until i became part of the women council, and then i learned diversity in suppliers is an issue. so it's a long question -- or a long answer to how did i get to this thing which is called small businesses, and actually when i came back from our meeting, i asked a procurement manager in our company, who do we buy from? he said what do you mean? i said, okay, how many women-owned businesses, how many men? he said you never asked it. i said, okay, i start to ask. actually you know what? it's about that, it's about those questions. it's about -- that's what it
means, that it matters, but it took a year and a half to know exactly who are the owners of the businesses we buy from. that's how i actually said yes when i was asked to be the head of jasmine which is a women owned business, small, of course, most of the businesses, but what made a difference for me is that it's about jewish and arab-owned businesses. so in every country when you look at the diversity, women is not one color, one shape, no. it is about the same diversity. i am sure it's about the u.s. -- i know it's about the u.s., i employ here, i know it's in every country that we talk about, and i had the privilege to really run or to be the chair of an organization that speaks in three languages, arabic, english, and hebrew because the women who are part of our organization don't speak one
language. so inclusiveness is that. but i think all of you, especially after this summer, and the news, if you open the news, it's about the war, it's about the aggression, it's about all the things that we in the middle east suffer from. jasmine is an island. we are jewish and arab women sitting together. it's about our business. it's about empowerment. it's about making money. it's about feeding the families. it's about business, but it's also really talking about or
looking what does it mean when we share same goals. the thing of peace, if you need an optimistic voice here, it can be done. just because i can see it really. and we have this dream that one day in every arab country you will see just means and we will collaborate because at that moment we cannot really because of the situation in the middle east. so women empowerment and women owned business is a movement. if we work together and the u.s. is a vital voice. if you ask yourself, you americans, if it is important that you'll express your opinion, that you will influence, i can say very clearly, yes, democracy matters. >> thank you, ofra. [ applause ] so, minister, we've gone from nonprofit area to business. you've been in government for many years with portfolios that are extremely important to the economy of indonesia.
how important is the partnership with government in all of this and what are some of the challenges that you had to confront in terms and indonesia still confronts because obviously this is all a continuing process, but in terms of moving women from informal economy to the formal economy and growing their role in the formal economy? >> yes. thank you. i'm very pleased to be here today to share the experiences from developing country and a policymaker's viewpoint, and to transform yourself from thinking about it and having to actually implement policy has been quite an interesting journey for me in the last ten years in
government, and i have to -- i was just reflecting yesterday on where does the switch come from, but the switch came before i became minister when i was working with jeffrey sachs on the u.n. millennium goals on poverty alleviation and we were in africa, and we were talking about village empowerment and how important it was to have decisionmaking done by the village as to what the money would be used for to help the village, and it turned out that when you have the men decide what they wanted the money to be used for, they wanted it to be used for a parabola so they could watch football. the women wanted the money to be used for having a piping system so they didn't have to spend three hours a day getting water. that was kind of the light switch in me and said, okay, it's not just about women participation in the economy. it's actually even more basic than that. it's about the decision making from the beginning as to what the money should be allocated for.
and that was an important lesson for me going in to government. as to how important it was to involve the women in the decision making. you know, you're not even talking about informal to formal. it's even more basic than that. so myself, when we went into government, we had very much that in the back of our minds. so that when we were implementing policy, when you say mainstreaming gender, it sounds so good and so easy to do on paper. but when you actually try to implement it on the ground, it is not always that easy. so we tried very hard to think about it and we always tried to influence the men, of course, because we were still -- even though we had doubled the number of women in the cabinet at the time from two to four, and it was -- and our president susilo bambang yudhoyono was very open minded. he gave important portfolios to women. i was in charge of trade and she was in charge of finance. we were relatively, as you could say, able to influence the policymaking.
i will give you a few examples as to how in practice, if you actually have to think about it. secretary clinton mentioned the example of the traditional markets. as minister of trade, one of my first jobs was to revitalize traditional markets. that is all informal sector. 90% of the traders are women. 90% of the people who shop are women. when i went into the market, i was aghast because the toilets were not designed for women. they were traditional -- you know, because it was the men who were designing the markets during the construction. and then i was seeing women working in the markets and they had babies there, and they had children running around in the mess of the market. and i said this is not right. and that's when i started to introduce you have to redesign the market because it is the women who are working there, et cetera, et cetera. and then we managed to make sure that there are childcare
centers, and toilets that were properly designed. and guess what? you know what the prophet centers were? the child care center and the toilets became profit centers. they pay, it's not free, but a huge amount. but it's small business. so these are solutions. and in the second example, it was myself and sri when we had to deliver the cash transfer program after the raise of the fuel price, and all the empyrrhicals, empirics are important, i'm a great believer in the data. it goes back to my parabolla and the water example. if you give the women the money for the cash transfer because you're talking about giving it to the poor, you are more likely it's going to be used to put food on the table and save a little bit for the education. all the empirics show that. we wanted to give the money to the women.
and our president supported it. but unfortunately, because of the regulation because of the family cart, it's the men is the head of the family, we couldn't do it. eventually we started to develop programs where we could actually give the money to women. same thing with cash for work. cash for work. it was all in construction. you know. it's only for men. i said hey, come on, cash for work during a crisis is not just for men. it has to be for women, too. you can't just give it only for making roads. it has to also be for women. you have to really think about it and show the economic value for women. we used a lot of the arguments and i think we really appreciate what secretary clinton did in 2011 to put it on the table that it's about the economics. it is about the business. women have that value. it is not just about equality and human rights. it is about economics.
that really helped us a lot in pushing forth the argument as a policymaker as well as including the men in the policymaking table. again, then we transformed it into the business side, including the access to capital and the micro financing where we found that women -- i will give you just one more example. i am giving you real examples of how we try to deal with the issue. when you look at the micro enterprises, i think our number show that only 23% of smes in indonesia are being run by women. it turns out it is because of -- and they are smaller businesses than the men-owned businesses and they have less access to capital. so there are institutional and cultural constraints. when they did the survey they asked why are women less confident to go to the banks to get a loan? one of the reasons given is, well, i am afraid i cannot pay back my loan. because the moment somebody gets sick in my family, i'm the one that has to take care of that
sick person. then i cannot pay my debt and i don't want to be in the position to not be able to pay my debt. so what happened was some of our banks, and it became good business, they bundled the financing package with insurance and saving because they also worry about the education. saving enough for the education of the kids. so a number of our banks came up with micro credit that bundled the banking services with the insurance and the savings and taught the women and gave them confidence that, don't worry, if somebody falls sick, there's an insurance here. and that really worked. and the government supported that in the financial inclusion agenda that we developed later on.
so these are, i think, real-life examples where it's not just -- we're not even talking about going from informal to formal. we're just taking care of the formal. and giving financial literacy and confidence for women, to be able to just even to go into a bank, and the banks have also figured out that this is a very, very psychologically, they don't even -- they don't even have the confidence to enter into a nice-looking office. so they bring the banks to the villages. you know, whether it's mobile banking, or creating, you know, a more comfortable situation for the women to be given just the financial literacy to begin with. so those are just some of the challenges that i faced and i really look forward to working more on these issues. >> you are actually far ahead in some ways because we are starting to catch up understanding that credit and savings and insurance all matter
in these propositions. we are going to go one quick round here and then open it up to questions. so be ready for that. cherie, you have made a big footprint on showing us that we've got a gender gap in mobile technology, and we have with us on the council a representative from intel. they've done a big study on the gender gap in the internet. and why is this gender gap, why is it critical to close it? what is going to happen to women in this 21st century economy if we don't address this? >> it is definitely true that knowledge is key in this. in today's world, the mobile phone in particular i think is the poor person's computer and the poor person's access to knowledge. so going back to what we just heard about in indonesia, we did a program called the business women's app, which was based -- we had it in indonesia, in tanzania and in nigeria. i'm sure there are students here from the economics department.
and they will probably agree with me that sometimes the business concepts aren't necessarily natural. i met many, many women with businesses who think so long as i produce things and keep churning them out, then surely i'll have a successful business. whereas, in fact, of course, it's all about, as you said, ofra, the pnl, and what's the difference between capital and income. there are all sorts of concepts, what do you deal with when you take on other employees. so we tried to put together using text messaging, a basic, i call it a nano mba. it's basic hints and tips for business women, using the mobile phone. they get four text messages a week with some information that was worked on with local universities so it was properly specific to the information they needed to know for their countries. it was in the local language. and we have that course. we just today, thanks to the exxon mobil foundation were able to publish the results of that assessment. and it shows quite clearly that if you can give targeted information to the women like
the women in the market that you were talking about, they will take that information and use it in their business and actually turn those businesses into even more of a success, or sometimes stop them becoming a failure. and we believe that we can use that even more. what we want to do now, because that was with exxon mobil foundation and nokia, but it was only on nokia handsets. we want to take this now to business women 0.2 and actually make it more widely available. because we believe that whilst it's great for people to be able to come to university and do mbas, there are a lot of people
out there already doing business who haven't had access to the formal education system that we all take for granted. but that doesn't mean they can't learn and benefit from business training delivered using the poor person's computer, which is the mobile phone. so that is something that we want to see. i know the council is going to be involved in how we can work with the big companies in the tech field to actually show how mobile can be a force for good. >> there are so many good examples today from the kind of information that can come to people who would ordinarily not get it in terms of health information, vital health information, to knowing where the market is on a given day. walking for miles and miles and miles. >> exactly. we also did a mobile app which was for rural women who were selling agricultural goods, and who used to have to walk up to a day at a time to get to the wholesalers to actually get the
goods. when they get there, they didn't necessarily have the ones they wanted. we transferred that through the wholesalers onto a computer in the wholesaler and mobile phones for the women sellers and they saw 200%, 300% increases in their turnover. one of the women said to me, she was a widow, she and her two children were getting one meal a day. now they could have two meals a day and her children could go to school. so i mean, this is a life transforming thing. there is so much more we can do with mobile value-added services. and that's just only starting. >> so, anne, let's go to the other end of the spectrum. a lot of talk today of women on corporate boards. women bumping up against that glass ceiling in management. producing far more women with all kinds of degrees, and yet, they seem stuck in some ways. i have a friend who says it's not a glass ceiling or a sticky floor. it's just a thick layer of men.
so how do we and how do you at bank of america -- i know you have been very much focused on what you can do to move women within your company, the kind of internal prospects. how do you do some of that and what more do you think we need to do generally? >> i think we all have to do more, period. and that thick layer of men, we have to sort of thin out. we're in a industry that has gone through a sea change. the financial services industry. generally, when there is chaos, there is opportunity. i would say that in your personal life and i think it is true in a very large company. the women's voices at a table have made a real difference in our company in recent years. one third of our board, our board of directors, are women. half the management of the company that are vp and above
are women. i do think that has made a huge difference in terms of just the conversation, let alone the progress we've made. so it isn't what was wrong with the men. it was just simply that women need to be at the table in the same way in economic terms, if the women aren't in business, then we're tying one hand behind our back no matter what country you're from. so that has been a big thing for us. and the other thing is, and just having the relationship with cherie, or the vital voices, or with the tory burch foundation, we find our own women very enthused by this opportunity. we now have men that are participating in the cherie ée]tá (urjrá ju)j because they feel just as much satisfaction.
and i think what it does is it gets everybody thinking about, let's be a little more entrepreneurial. let's think a little bit more progressively. in our case, we're a huge company but we have 15 million people that mostly do their banking on mobile banking in a completely developed world. yet they have some of the very same questions about financial literacy. we did a program on financial literacy for years. i think people think it is like paint drying. they don't love it. and yes when we became a partner with sal khan who does khan academy and does online education, and i think he's the best in the world doing this, and we interviewed our own people, let alone the marketplace, we redid everything. and we got very basic. it was in these digestible bites of, you know, before you tell me how to create a nest egg, could you just hold up the paycheck and tell me why i'm only really taking home half of what i thought i made? and when you get practical it makes a difference. and it makes the people in your company feel better about you. so it's all those things, not one of those things. but i really just have to thank
the nonprofits that we've worked with, because they've enlightened us. >> ofra, we talked a lot about the power of small and medium-sized businesses and it has been particularly hard for women to be able to move into the space but when they do to ensure that they can grow. give us just a quick snapshot of the state of women-owned small and medium-sized businesses in israel. >> just to put in a different light the whole idea of small medium-sized businesses, and academic. we are here in the academy world, actually small, medium-sized businesses is a measurement of entrepreneurship. so what you see actually in emerging markets, or developing countries, is that usually women or small businesses open because they want to provide food to their family and kids. in developed countries -- by the way, israel is one of them -- it
is actually a measurement of entrepreneurship. people open, or women, or people as a whole, open businesses because they are entrepreneurs. so really, when you think about economy, everybody talks about entrepreneurship as a measurement or a way to grow the economy. small, medium-sized businesses are the vehicle to actually make it happen. so when i started to really look at the numbers and understand what it means and where we are on this curve, it is a different way to talk to our government about why is it so important. and when we looked at the numbers what we saw is actually the women, the amount of women-owned businesses is really very small. the other fact and figure is, access to capital, mentoring, women all around the world, no matter which country, which state the country is, we have same issues. so let's hear.
so if globalization means anything for small, medium-sized businesses owned by women, one thing, issues, obstacles and opportunities are the same and we can really start to share how to really help small and medium-sized businesses. so in israel, this is a natural because it does reflect things that are in every country, even very rich countries have within their society emerging markets. so they are the ones who are privileged and they are participating in the economy. and there are always those emerging markets. whether it's because religion that makes them at the outskirts of society or because of the color of the skin or a hundred
things. so whatever it is that we share here, it's really relevant to every country. so in our own country, in my country, israel, there are jewish and arabs. so the jewish women have more access to capital than the arab women. there are a lot of reasons why, but again, most of them do not have records and really banks and they're all here, really want to see record a few years of really work. the other thing that is common to all of us, women, when they give birth, stay at home. we don't really think about the fact that if we stay at home we don't have records. so when we go to the bank, we have this gap. we didn't work for awhile.
we cared for our children. the other thing is, in our country, i'm sure in every country as well, but religious women, whether we are ultra orthodox jewish women or religious muslims women or religious christian women, they have an issue of going out of the house. so small businesses are actually a great opportunity. if we say religion matters. and if we say it is part of the society. small businesses, mobile phones, computer really allows family, much more women to participate. in israel, that's what we discovered. and as my personal experience, you know, we are all trapped in the, doesn't matter if it's the neighborhood that we grew up or the university where we study, we have our, you know, we have our friends and family, and if
we don't reach out and look at other numbers and try to meet other cultures, which is exactly what happened to me in jasmine. i really discovered that there are so many things i don't see within our society, and we are a small society. so i can imagine in countries which are much larger. small businesses usually represent the whole society because it is about employing one or employing two and it's a great, great way maybe to close or give an answer to the number one risk that the world economic forum say is a risk, which is the gap between the rich and the poor. so maybe we sit here and we talk about one of the great ways to solve one of the things that threatens actually the whole world. >> excellent. thank you. i am going to end up here after i ask mari one more question. maybe you can begin to line up. but minister, you said, i found
this quote, that we are not going to achieve higher growth and more equitable distribution of income without women's participation. and you went on to say we need to figure out how we can forward gender issues and mainstream them. so now you conclude decade in government. what advice do you have yourself as you go on but to all of us as to how we close that gap? >> well, i think we have to continue our, let's say, advocacy, as well as showing best practices and good examples of what works and what doesn't work. i believe in numbers. i have been using the numbers
that hillary clinton started in 2011. and you know, how many -- the final effect, how only 5%, i think, for the u.s., who are women in board members. even though 50% at the entry level, and then it is 5% at the ceo level, and 15% at the board level. the numbers are much smaller for asia. japan is one of the lowest. i think japan is like less than 1% for ceo and 2% for board member. indonesia is actually a bit better, 5% and 8%. and those numbers i do use so you know, at every level, workforce, labor participation rate for women. the number on the boards. so it's at every level. women owned businesses. these are numbers that we use. and then the numbers are important to show how much you're missing in terms of the potential of women that you are not utilizing. it is half of your human capital. we make that argument.
the most important, what are the obstacles that caused this? if you start with the women on the board, why is there a funnel effect? we all know that the three constraints are the family balance, family and career balance. the second is anywhere/anytime model. for you to go up in the corporate ladder it's anywhere, anytime. you have to move tomorrow to london. you know. pack up and go. that is how you advance your career. unless the merit or performance system is changed in that way, then, you know, you cannot advance in your career. the role of technology helps, working from home. and so on. but companies have to change in the way they evaluate how they -- that it's different the way you evaluate merit and performance in women and men. that has to come from enlightenment from the men, who are still running the boards,
and in charge. so that's why, you know, it's not just about us. you know, this is the room of the converted. the battle is out there, the unconverted, the nonconverted, the ones that have to be convinced. this is why the numbers and the examples are very important. and you know i think the numbers also show that having more women on the board gives you more profitability, better governance as the secretary said. these are numbers that we need to push to forward. i think being -- mentoring, i'm a great believer in mentoring and role models. and give women confidence. you know whether you like or not like cheryl sandberg's "lean in" whatever model, there are different models. but you know, i think all of us who have achieved some level of success, it's upon us also to help the younger women. i'm a little bit of a role model. i didn't intend to be. but i was the first woman to come back to my country with a ph.d. in economics. i was the first woman to do this, to do that.
and i'm married and i have two children, despite my mother telling me not to do a ph.d. because i would never get married. so you know, when women come up to me and say oh, i want to do a ph.d. but i'm afraid i'm going to be overqualified, nobody is going to want to marry me. no, no, look at me, you know. because this is a cultural thing. there is also a cultural thing. i think, i don't know this is across countries or not, but there's a cultural thing in my part of the world where, you know, if a girl wants to do well, that's not so good. you know, being ambitious is not so good for a girl. it's good for a boy, it's not good for a girl. these are some of the debunking of myths that we have to do. and the way we manage, also. you know, we are tough like this, we're considered bossy, and there's another "b" word that i won't mention here that we are often categorized but for the same behavior the men are being, oh, he's a firm leadership.
he's a good leader. you know, these are some of the -- these are cultural issues which we also continue to face. but we should never give up, right? and we should continue to work on the unconverted. and show by example. get the good projects, get the good examples out there. and technology, i really also all you have said i think technology is a great answer. because a lot of the informal sector in my country, it's women working from home. making handicrafts, making food, whatever, you know. so e-commerce on selling online. is a great answer for women, and i would encourage all of us to work hard on that as a tool for women. >> we have some of those cultural issues here, too. okay. can you tell us your name? the school you're in and what your question is. and who it's directed to. somebody's classes must be starting. >> my name is wen jin and i'm a law student. so i'm from china.
first of all, thank you very much for coming down to share your perspectives. it's a wonderful talk and i really appreciate it. i have two questions. they are both addressed to miss cherie blair. my first question is, is there any threshold, or like qualification to the mentorship program? cherie blair foundation. does having a business idea suffice, you know, to the program? second i think we will all agree that the women entrepreneur culture is more profound in developed country like u.s., and uk than developing countries. so is a part of the current or future strategy of the foundation to kind of cultivate the culture in developing countries to reach out to people
who don't have the notion yet? thank you. >> so cherie, before you answer that i'm going to take a couple more questions. and then the panel can finish by answering whichever one is appropriate. >> hi, my name is nicole, i'm a student in the sfs. my question, first of all, is to say that the five women currently sitting on the stage in front of me have achieved things that many of us could possibly never dream of achieving. and probably never will. yet on a scale, for me, a lot of these achievements seem to be directed towards a microscale. my question for whoever one of you wishes to answer is how do you bring these achievements into a macro forum? how do you identify the flaws in government, in the financial
systems, in infrastructures, that exist on a macroscale? and how do you bridge that gap, not only between gender, but between development? >> that is a wallop. okay. another one? >> thank you so much for being here. my name is shopro and i'm a senior in the school of business and i've been very involved in the georgetown entrepreneurship initiative. and i think one of the things i've learned the most is how important entrepreneurial ecosystems are to really accelerating growth and innovation. having resources and entrepreneurs in a physical proximity, physical space really makes it easier for people to pursue those. my question is, how do you cultivate those self-sustaining entrepreneurial ecosystems in developing countries so that that sort of innovation and change can be systemic? and can come from within those countries, as opposed to maybe us thinking that we know all the answers? >> good. so cherie, quick answer from you, and then we'll go to the macro question, and then the one on sustaining entrepreneurship.
>> in relation to the question about who our mentees are. we aim our mentorship program to mentees who already have an existing business. we found actually that we get more progress with someone who has a business and wants to take it to the next stage. and that is not to say we don't have start-up businesses. and when we started the mentoring platform we did have a lot of young woman in particular who were just starting their businesses. but we found, in fact that they need the sort of eco-system that the third question was talking. it was helpful to women who had already started on their business journey. they just weren't quite sure when they were next. when we look for our mentors we
look for experience. the mentor's experience is remote but we are looking for those people, like those from bank of america, if you are on the journey to becoming the ceo but with practical hands-on experience. i did want to say something about eco-systems. we have done a lot in israel and in lebanon, about to take it to the uae we do general business training and we take a smaller group and do coaching and then finally taking a smaller group again and over a year give them business incubation and support. for example, in lebanon we did a project there with 60 -- with 40 women we managed to create over that year 60 new jobs. so i think eco-systems are important. i think you have a point about
that. it is just not acknowledged that the woman who is baking cakes for herself or her neighbors or friends or the hairdresser. they are all entrepreneurs but no one has told them what they do and no one has helped them to be able to see they could do that not just for the people they know but for a wider community which is why the facebook opportunity, which helps women to use facebook, to get friends virtually who become their customers has been such a success. >> i'm take a brief explanation on the macro. first of all, the macro, there is a sea change over the past couple of years where
transparency is so much more in the forefront of business government nonprofits. it isn't that you like everything you see but you're going to see it all. and once you see it all, it allows you to, i think, reorder things. so whether that is in any walk of life, because of social media, because the world has become less institutional, i think more human. and i don't mean that in a soft way, i mean that individuals have a larger choice, whether you are looking at the arab spring or you're looking at what happened with the financial services industry or any kind of investigation going on, transparency is so much more prominent and more people are at the table and there is very little you can't do that something isn't going to be out there. i'm not saying that can't happen. but that is a huge difference. and the second thing, and you were saying that, so how do you scale these ideas? there is nothing that happens -- you don't begin anything on a big scale.
you beta it. in the largest companies so we're a large company you beta something. you see how it is going to go. you test it. you test and learn and then expand it. so all of the things we are talking about here today whether it is mari or ofra or cherie or myself. you don't just arrive on the stage doing something big. you begin in a small way and you work it. if it works then you develop it more. i would say both of those things. and the last thing i would expect all of the people in this room to achieve whatever we've achieved and more. that is sort of a given. that is the hope of everybody that the next generation is bigger better than we are. >> so before i turn to ofra and
mari for last comments, i'm going to take one more i'm sorry, and they can factor it into their answer. >> hi, my name is aprila and i'm a senior in the school of business and i read recently of a study mentioned in a recent bloomberg article that nine out of ten women pulled -- polled on wall street believed their men counterparts earned a higher wage. now as women in positions of in credible influence, what do you see in the salary difference and what would you propose to combat this inequity? thank you. >> well quickly i think the first thing is if you think that is happening, ask. be bold. and the second thing that i think in -- i can't speak for every industry but because of
the way of the world in human resources, as a woman that is in a position that would be looking at what the other people are making and men, you ask and you check and you have human resources verify for you so you are not wondering. and once you know it will change. >> i would just say we are the result of the last hundred years, okay. so i think if you look at the next hundred years there is much more data, it is much more of an issue. everyone talks about it. the world economic forums and it was small rooms where women would talk so now it is on the main stage. so the gap between men and women and the access to whether it is capital, education, it is measured. so there is much more data which
means there is much more to be done. so i think that you the young people who study now, have much more women, have much more opportunities than our generation had, because everyone talks about it the numbers are there. even kind of punishment of not doing the right thing is there. so on a positive end, a very optimistic look to the future, i think at least most of those things like measurement understanding that it is the right ethical thing, that it is about the moral thing and about the business case. >> it is all there. so i think things will be better if we'll all just make the right efforts to really ask for them insist on them and the men will
join us at the end. so if it was felt that we are unique, yes, we are unique, because the last hundred years it was less of an issue. now you hear the next generation of presidents ministers, and all of those things when they run for the seats at the top of this world. so i think it will be easier for you girls and women in the next hundred years. >> yeah, i think we are way ahead compared to a hundred years ago or even 20 years ago, when the study in our universities were showing that girls were underperforming academically because they didn't want to lose out getting a
boyfriend. this is empirically shown in our case. and then 20 years later they are not underperforming academically and then we find the girls are getting better grades than the boys. so we don't worry about that because we are advancing. i think the battle is still out there. i believe in the economic argument very much that this is the one that will win the battle. women are the economic drivers and it makes economic and business sense therefore from birth to when they are corporate leaders, we have to make sure that whether it is a policy regulation that has to be changed, an institution that has to be changed or a cultural mindset has to be changed, so from birth, 0-5, nutrition and health, equal access to education, it is about building the human capital all the way to
job opportunities and access to capital. these are all of the stops we have to continue to advocate and make the policy changes make the advocacy, make the changes and it is not just women who will make it it has to be the men. so there is education out there that we need to do and i'm sure all of us in this room and the younger generation will continue to do this together. thank you. >> those are perfect last words. the journey continues. before we all thank our panelists, i want to thank the council members who are still here. i know airplane schedules have intervened for some. i want to thank the women ambassadors who are here. i just noticed so many of you are here. [ applause ] it's wonderful to have you. i want to thank zen morin from coming. she spent more than a decade in
prison in myanmar burma and now she is moving myanmar forward. so thank you. and claudia sitting next to her is the former attorney general of guatemala and because of her they've made great progress in terms of justice in that country. [ applause ] >> so to all of the women leaders here and to all of the inspiration here and to all of you who are going to take over we wish you well. and the council has a lot of work to do, but final thanks to our extraordinary panel. [ applause ] up next, live to the heritage foundation for a two-day policy summit.
the speakers include ted cruz and new member of congress who are expected to focus on government spending, energy policy and free market initiatives. this is live coverage on cspan3. it is just getting started. this is what this summit and a book that we're releasing today called opportunity for all and favoritism to none speaks to. it is about moving past the boring politics of washington, d.c., the ups and downs of the consulting class, the favoritism for boeing's back or big business. the back scratch in between regulator and those they regulate. opportunity for all and favoritism to none is an agenda that should make americans proud and worthy of jefferon and washington and king. and today we'll int duce greater opportunity to the workplace.
education, housing and energy policies, to help families balance their budget. and the policies necessary to promote strong families capable of preparing our children for the future and a budgetary path that will leave them sustained. the agenda over the next few days is a must-pass. it is different than the pages of politico or the score card of the united states chamber but that is the point. our first speaker is a man who fought for opportunity for every americans, as a congress first elected in 199-jim demint fought for entitlement reforms and social security and fundamental tax reform that provide growth and opportunity throughout our economy. as a senator first elected in 2004 he led the fight to end earmarks and brought change to washington in the face of marco rubio and pat toomey cruz, mike
lee and rand paul. he is now the president of the heritage foundation and i'm pleased to introduce the real person that has come to washington, jim demint. >> thank you very much. thank you, mike. thank all of you for being here. happy new year to everyone. and it is great to have so many join us. heritage heritage staffers from the hill, leaders from other organizations and thousands of heritage members joining us online and our friends and the media, for our second annual conservative policy summit hosted by heritage action. last year's summit had 73 members of the media joining us including fox, cspan, cnn, abc, over 19,000 people watched our live stream on our website and
we expect eesk -- even more this year. i'll be returning this afternoon to introduce senator cruz and tomorrow to introduce senator rand paul so i hope to see all of you back here again. at heritage we see ourselves as representatives for freedom freedom-minded americans. a vocal constitutional conscious to the federal government. a north star that helps lawmakers navigate a precarious landscape fraught with special interest pulling them in all directions directions. congress is kept in a fox hole mentality, fighting one battle after another without telling americans where they are trying to lead the country. but conservatives can inspire and motivate, by showing americans how our ideas and policies will make their life better and our country stronger. this is a purpose of the conservative policy summit to inspire americans with real
solutions. you will here from -áhear from congressmen and senators about their policy ideas that will bring stronger and safer community, a stronger america. it may shock you to hear, but the congressmen and senators you are hearing from today are the real progressives in washington. they are fighting against the status quo. committed to ending business as usual into washington and showing americans how we can progress to a better future. it is all about opportunity for all, and favoritism for none. we see the need to progress to a nimble, citizen-centers government where people had many choices in all areas of their lives, not just the one choice offered by the government. if we can do it with cell phones an computers, we can do it with health care and education.
and especially values. americans must be fro to decide-- free to decide what they believe and what they value without government sponsor intimidation. those who call themselves progressives in washington are the protectors of the status quo. the ones calling for more failed big-government solutions. it is the independent minded conservatives who are offering the road map to real progress. ask yourself where are the bold student-centered reforms on education coming from now? certainly not from the liberty leaders in lock step with teachers solutions trying to shut down parent directed options and charters. but they are coming from people like luke messer. a plan to return dollars and education decisions to families. or ask mike lee and
representative ron desantis about the hero act which aims at affording the higher education to break the liberal monopoly in universities and give students a lot more for their money and more marketable skills. what about lower energy skills that will lower the cost of americans and eliminate our dependence on unfriendly foreign countries for more. don't look to the radical left, those who call themselves progressives but never saw a pipeline they didn't want to shut down or technology they didn't want to regulate or air they didn't want to tax. instead, look to the representatives like jeff duncan whose expand act will include a modern production and incentivize further development by lowering rates across the
board. ask you are yfl, who is dead dated to a spotlight on corruption. who wants to cut waste fraud and abuse? it can't be this administration, which at associated press has determined is the least transparent in history or the financial giants who are too big to fail but not too big to bail. if you want to end the secrecy and cozy relationships between big government and big business, turn to people like jeb henserling whose path gets out of the mortgage business and taxpayers off the hook. or catch tom price this afternoon who is dedicating to filling the house budget committee with sunshine so every american can know their money is being spent wisely. these are just a few of the innovative legislators we'll be hearing from today and tomorrow. the fact is our guests see a
problem and say we need to change something. the political establishment sees a problem and says we need more money, and more of the same. it is obvious then who offers real progress. for real progressives all of the solutions have something in common no matter what the issue is. ford to give people freedom in education, prosperity at home and dignity in society we need to clear the road blocks of cronyism ahead. decades of mismanagement in washington have left the path of opportunity littered with hazards. the snow banks of favoritism can freeze congress to inaction. boulders and back room deals can stop us dead in our tracks. so we must clear out these obstacles to move forward. we must not be tempted by detours just to avoid confrontations with the left because they will fight to hold
every inch of ground that they have taken from freedom. we must be willing to fight to retake freedom's sacred ground. this drive to real progress will have many backseat drivers and naysayers. there are so many who benefit from the status quo. the people who condemn capitalism on the campaign trail instead of distancing themself when they get in office, they invite their cronies to help write legislation to eliminate their competition. and what is the result? regular americans get shut out of the decision-making process. small businesses are subjected to expensive regulations crafted by the big dogs. and a quality under the law comes second to sweetheart deals. this is neither the free market nor responsible regulation. it is cronyism. it is the single greatest road block to reform.
and can you find -- and you can find it everywhere in washington. but today we are giving notice to those who use the knowledge of profit ears. whether they walk at congress or wall street. they have served their own ends. our rallying cry is opportunity for all and favoritism for none. the policies we'll hear about during the summit reflect this vision. i know millions of americans across this great nation share it. it seems that the only place that does not share this vision is washington itself. i ask you to join me in welcoming all of those progressives who come here today with better solutions for a stronger, and prosperous americans and i look forward to being a part of it with you. again, thank you all for being here. [ applause ]
thank you, senator demint. thank you for being here. our first speaker will be here in a couple of minutes so we'll have about a five minute intermission here. i'm tim chapman, the chief operating officer for heritage action for america and i'll be your emcee over the next couple of days and very much look forward to it. in five minutes tom price will be talking about what he's working on in the budget committee and we'll get that going in a few minutes. thanks.
again we're live here at the heritage foundation at the start of the two-day policy summits. speakers later today is ted cruz but we'll start with who we are expecting next. we expect to hear from congressman tom price of georgia, a republican from georgia. and around 3:00 congressman jeff duncan from south carolina. and then we will hear from texas republican senator ted cruz.
he'll be around 4:00 p.m. and expected to go until 4:30 eastern. our coverage of the summit will end right after 5:00. they will take a break between 4:55 and 5:00 and then we will transition over to the house rules committee and they will take up regulation as the house works to make changes to the dod frank regulations. all of that coming up here on the networks and here on cspan3.
the budget chairmanship at a important time in our country's history. the house budget committee is at the forefront of addressing the challenges. he has big shoes to fill frankly. congressman paul ryan has been a very effective advocate for reform. in his tenure as chairman, he introduced the ryan road map which began a national conversation about where we go in the future about entitlement reform and how to repeal obama care and what to put in place. before the ryan budgets these were the third rail of politics. reform those at your own political peril and there was a lot of criticism at the time when the ryan budgets first came out that this was too dangerous for republicans. we've seen what happened.
the numbers are going up. this is not the third rail of politics any more. liberal scare mongering has become fairly ineffective. not that it is something to be considered but we've seen it can be beaten back. remember the ads of pushing granny off the cliff. those didn't work so well in the last election. and i think that what we've learned about this is that the american people are plenty smart, have plenty of wisdom and when they see you take a bold stand for something that will help them in their daily lives, they'll rally to your side. it is a reason to be encouraged and a reason for more members of congress to have political courage to address these kind of issues. so congressman price picks up the mantle on the success of the past and we they there is not -- and we think there is no better person to do this. he's been an ally of the
heritage foundation and so taking this chairmanmanship and pushing on is something we are looking forward to. and we are looking forward to what we are doing and looking to the future. so please help me in welcoming tom price to the stage. >> thanks tim. great to be with you and back at heritage. i want to thank heritage for the opportunity to be here and heritage action for the work you all have done. it is incredibly important work to continue the benefit of all americans. and thank you all for showing. i see some familiar faces in the audience and not so familiar. so welcome. you may have stumbled in out of
the rain and stumbled into a fascinating opportunity but hopefully this is the spot where you intended to this hour. i have a hard stop at 1:00 but i'll make some remarks and we'll do q&a and i'm happy to talk about what you want to talk about. but the house budget committee and the deadlines coming up early in the year so that you can hopefully get a handle on what we're looking at. i can't tell you how excited i am about the opportunity to chair the house budget committee. the opportunities that we have are really remarkable. the past four years, if we're honest have been a muddled mess. with what we've seen from the senate democrats and the kind of activity that the house struggled to get through the floor, even though they would -- we would put good policy in the senate, it just got shoved into harry reid's bottom drawer. so i can't tell you how excited i am to work with a senate that wants to get something done and
hopefully get things to the president's desk. i think we're in a win-win situation. if we can get anything to the president's desk, we win. because if he signs it, it will be good policy for the american people and if he vetoes it, then it begins to demonstrate to the american people the contrast because of the muddled mess over the last few years the contrast from those trying to solve the challenges and problems in the country and who is standing in the way. the president will be laid bare and the emperor has no clothes. so i can't tell you how excited i am looking forward with the budget committee. the budget is not just numbers on a sheet of paper. it is our vision. it is the kind of policies and programs we could put in place to address the challenges and the problems that we have so that we can provide for -- an opportunity for all americans to have a greater opportunity to succeed. and that is what a budget is.
and so we will lay out our path for real hope and real opportunity as we move forward. a few years ago, many of you will recall that the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff then mike mullen was asked what he thought was the greatest threat to national security for the united states. the greatest threat. this is the highest ranking military officer in the country is asked what the greatest threat was to our national security. and you all know what he replied? the debt. the debt. $18 trillion and growing. and the total debt exceeds the gross domestic product and we're on an absolutely unsustainable path. and the budget committee is where we get our fiscal house in order. why do we want to do that?
again, it is not just numbers on a page and making things add up to zero to get a balanced budget, but with a debt that size paying the interest on the debt servicing that debt, every single dollar that services that debt is a dollar that can't be used for education, can't be used for healthcare, can't be used for transportation or energy. that can't be used for national security. it is literally at a point where it is approaching choking off the actual vitality of our great country. so that is the reason. it is not just numbers on a page. it is making certain that we provide for a greater amount of opportunity for all americans. you all know now that we find ourselves in a situation where we as a nation are spending about $3.6 trillion a year. and $3.6 trillion a year in entirety. $2.6 trillion is medicare, medicaid social security and interest on the debt.
interest on the debt by the way is scheduled to approach $1 trillion within a ten-year period of time within the budget window. all of that money we can't use for something else. so $3.6 is the big number and $2.6 is what we spent for the debt and right around a trillion for everything else. so when you think about the federal government and you think about roads and energy and education and national defense and all of the kinds of things legislative branch and commerce everything else except for medicare medicaid and social security and interest on the debt you are all a bright office and you know we've had deficits of greater than a tillon for -- trillion for the laxt six years which means you can do away with the entire government with the exception of
medicare medicaid and social security. and if you get rid of everything, in those four years we wouldn't even balance the budget. so that is the magnitude of the challenge before us. so when you hear folks say, you don't need to worry about social security or medicare or medicaid medicaid, not a problem. that is not only irresponsible, it is deceitful. they are just not telling you the truth. so we can continue as a nation to stick our head in the stand but we can't save and strengthening the programs that are vital for so many of our fellow citizens. that is at the same time on the revenue side the money coming into the federal government, as you know, is at the highest absolute rate every. more money collected in the last quarter from the american people than ever. so if you have that kind of debt and growing debt and those kinds of deficits and you have those
kind of revenue numbers, increasing numbers coming into the federal government, the problem isn't revenue, the problem is spending and you all know this so very, very well. the three ways to solve the problem, all right. raise taxes. it is our favorite way to do that from our friends on the other side of the aisle. or you can decrease spending and to be honest with you the house has done a pretty doggone good side, on the discretionary side, the nonautomatic side. those numbers have been coming down in real numbers, min cally but coming down each of the last four years. but where the problem and the spending is is the spending, medicare, medicaid and social security. so you can raise taxes decrease economic and hope to grow the network
network. an we hope to put in place and lay out the vision for how we would grow our economy in a very positive way expand success for the american people. how are we going to do that? we are intent on building on the success we've had already at the budget committee over the last four years. as tim mentioned, the budgets that have been laid out have demonstrated how you get the balance and demonstrated the remarkable things that can be done if you think creatively and have faith in the american people and have faith in the -- the free market system that has made us the greatest nation in the history of the world and we'll build on that success. we will lay out a budget this year. the budget has to be done by the end of the march. we'll lay out a budget this year that will come to balance within the window. within a ten-year period of time. i hope it is in that time and i'm excited with the ten or 11
new people on the budget committee and we're going to challenge them to come up with ideas to get to balance in a shorter period of time. second, one of the things we can do at the budget committee, and that is to normalize the debate about controversial issues. as tim mentions, four years ago no one would have given us a prayer to lay out a solution to save and strengthen and secure medicare and sustain the onslaught from the other side. and everybody said no, you can't do that. and we worked and worked and convinced our friends and colleagues and moved forward with a positive solution so positive that the romney-ryan won the senior vote. we need to normalize the debate about how you resolve the
remarkable challenges that we have. we believe that it is important to save and strengthen medicare medicaid and social security. and the other side believes they are all right with going broke because every one of the programs is going broke. every single one. social security/disability runs out of money next year. this isn't in 2080, this is next year. the urgency is huge. so we believe it is important to put in place the programs an the policies, the positive solutions to save and strengthen and secure medicare, medicaid and social security. and i can't wait to have the new members on the budget committee sink their teeth to the wonderful issues that are so important to solve if we're going to get our fiscal house in order to create an if economy that will thrive and grow. third, i think that we have on
conservative side, we have either ignored or put on the back burner or lost the whole principal of federalism when it comes to federal government spending and federal government policy and budgeting. it is one of the areas that i hope to normalize again, the debate from the federal budget committee. forwardism isn't just -- federalism isn't just having the states and the counties doing what they should as opposed to the federal government it is a principal that puts into place solutions that allow greater amount of choices and solutions for every single american. that is what federalism does. and that is what we're going to -- we're going to work hard on trying to identify the ours where we ought to be able to move forward in a big big way. and fourth, regulatory reform. the burden, the incredible burden of the regulatorio progs that has come -- oppression that
has come out of this town, on steroids for the last six years has to be stressed. we talk about how the corporate tax rate should be decreased. and individuals pay taxes and corporations collect the taxes. and we collect about $300 billion a year in corporate taxes. the burden for americans, large and small businesses and americans across this country is at least five times that. at least five times that. annually. the amount of money that goes into comply with all of this federal regulatory scheme is over $1.5 trillion a year. again, those are monies that -- well we all believe in regulation. ought to be appropriate, right-sized, accountable regulation. not just because somebody in this town has a great idea of
how somebody ought to do something. as a practitioner i will tell you there are practitioners that think they can take care of patients and they don't. and they should not right the regulations to dictate to practitioners and other individuals who they know nothing about what that kind of practice or what that kind of endeavor is. so we believe that the budget committee is the place to begin to get more of a regulatory owe appreciation going on. and i believe you've heard of reconciliation and it is an important tool of congress to be used but it is not a silver bullet. it doesn't solve all problems. it is absolutely important and comes through the budget committee. we'll provide reconciliation directives that we hope the senate will agree upon. the reason it is important is
because then it can come -- when it is agreed upon it can come back to the floor of house and in an expedited section and it doesn't take a super majority. all sorts of reconciliations have been used for good things and bad. reconciliation in some variety was the obama care and the tax reductions for the previous decade '01, and '03. and the balanced budget act of the late '90s when we got to a balanced budget. but as i say it is a powerful tool but not a silver bullet but a important tool. and finally at the budget committee, we believe budget process reform is absolutely imperative. we are budget process written 40 years ago by folks who wanted the default in this town to be -- to continue to spend and spend and
spend more and more. so i look at budget process reform in two areas. one short-term, we got off to a doggone good rules with the macro scoring we put in place and i'll talk about that in a second and there are other short-term things baseline things we can do. and in the long-term but not in this congress because i don't believe the president has any interest in reforming budget process, but in long-term i think it is important that we re write the 1974 budget act and much more accountable and makes it that the government's role in terms of spending is a default to spend less not a default to spending more. so i look forward to working with folks on the committee to make certain we move in that direction. that is a longer-term prospect. let me touch on some specific
issues an then i'm happy to address any questions. macro economic analysis or scoring, i call it accurate and realistic scoring the congressional budget office is i believe, imprisoned by rules that make it so they can't get to the right answer. over the past two months i've been spending a lot of time on the telephone with economists from around the country. bright minds men and women who have spent their lives in the economic arena and ask them what they think they ought to be done and one of the answers from each and every one of them was on macro economic scoring. and almost to a person, they were wholeheartedly supportive of this and some had great descriptions of what that means. one of them we can either do what we are doing now, which is to belyly -- incorrect or
do what we ought to do is be unprecisely incorrect. and when we sent something to the budget office and we don't allow for the changele policy -- we change policy in this town because we think it will affect something and we send it to the congressional budget office and say don't assume it will change anything. in fact you can't assume it will change anything. so that number is zero. as other economists said we know it is not zero. it may be somewhere between 1-7, but we know it is not zero so why would we say it is zero? doesn't make any sense at all. so in the rule we passed last week in the house we're dipping our toe in the water. this is not changing the sun and the earth as it relates to scoring at congressional budget office. what we said if a policy would result in a change -- that was
greater than.25% of gross domestic product that is about $40 billion. three bills in the last congress would have come under that provision. then you ought to be able to look at what the effects may be and use those in our pros fres a scoring standpoint. this is a small step in the right direction. second big issue that is coming up quickly is the sustainable growth rate the sgr, the doc fix. it expires on march 31st. it is time to fix this. this has been broken since it was instituted but clearly broken for the last 12-13 years. every single year congress runs around trying to figure out how to find the money to cover the hole to cover the patch to make it so we don't push more and more physicians out of the practice of caring for medicare
patients. this is not to add for something -- something to add to a zero page. but the practices that see seniors, has limited the numbers they see. not because they don't want to take care of them but because the numbers don't add up because the federal government is imposing the restrictions. one out of eight physicians in a practice that would normally care for seniors said we are not seeing any more. not seeing any more seniors. again, not because they've forgotten how to practice ped sin but because of the -- forgotten how to practice the medicine, and i'm hopeful we can end that by this quarter. and third is the debt season coming due on march 15th. but with the extraordinary
measures that are able to be taken, it probably runs into june july, august time frame. i think it is important that we appreciate that the debt ceiling provides focus on this issue, but the problem isn't the debt ceiling. the problem is the debt. the problem isj r debt. and that is why we need to get our arms around this debt and our arms around the policies and procedures we need to put in place to put us on a path to balance and pay off that debt. again, a great opportunity. a great opportunity to focus on the budget committee and we will be front and center on that. and finally in terms of an issue, i would be remiss if i didn't mention obama care or healthcare. obama care is not only harming health care in this country but it is harming our economy. it is doing in ways big and small. not just for medical practices or physicians and hospitals trying to care for patients but for businesses small and large
who of their own volition want to provide health coverage for their employees and found it difficult. wanting to hire more folks and have a cap on the number of individuals they can hire so they don't come under the forces and the regulations and the rules of obama care. that is not a system that works for people. it may work for government. it may even work for insurance companies but it doesn't work for people or for patients. so i'm excited about the opportunity to continue to put forward patient-centered positive solutions and i hope we're able to use our budget to put forward some of those programs as well. great, great opportunity is going to come, i believe in june when the supreme court will rule on king v. burwell. this is the case coming before the court. they'll hear the arguments in march and rule likely the last week of june and probably the last day of their rulings. and this is the one that said if the law itself the bill as passed and the law put into place did not provide for
subsidies to be able to be utilized to provide health coverage for those who get their coverage through a federal exchange, it is very clear -- the law is very clear. and this law -- if this position if the supreme court agrees with what we believe to be the letter of the law, then this unravels obama care pretty doggone quickly. that is a good thing. but it is not a good thing to not have any replacement or solution ready and available for congress to act upon. and so we need to be ready, willing and able to move forward with making sure we stick to the principles of healthcare accessible and coverage and choices an not destroy those principals. if we do that i think we'll have a great opportunity for the president to support positive reform when it comes to health care. so exciting and challenging time. let me thank you for your interest today and thank
heritage action for the wonderful advocacy on behalf of the american people. thank you so much. god bless. [ applause ] >> thank you very much congressman price. we have about 12 minutes where the congressman can take some questions and we have questions online, we've got a lot of folks watching online and we have press and we have attendees here so we'll try to cycle through the various questions. first question. right here. >> there are a lot of things that can be done to save budget costs through management reforms and the bureaucracy and related to your discussion about dynamic scoring, have you thought about doing anything on the cost side. you can't legislate management savings and it is estimated $50 billion in potential cost savings by squeezing out
redundancy and stream lining the government's back office without touching a dollar of program remission, have you thought about looking at those kind of savings and considering a way to get around the bird rule in the future? >> getting around the bird rule is i think going to be a real challenge without the comprehensive reform of the budget act. i view that as a long-term solution. i haven't met anybody on the senate side appearing to be willing to tackle that and because it is statutory, it would take -- i think that is better done in the re-write of the '74 act. if you look at other items and in terms of where we can find savings, the gao and heritage and all others point to significant savings that could be identified and utilized and it is the energy and enthusiasm or excitement of the ten or 11 members or our budget committee
that we will rely on to help push those kind -- push those kind of solutions. so absolutely. we have to be more creative. we have to be more inventive in how we're solving the challenges on behalf of the american people from a budgetary standpoint. the challenges get more difficult every year. and the president who refuses to act on these kinds of things makes it difficult for us to get our fiscal house in order. but we're up to the task. and i know the american people are interesting in making certain that we fulfill that task. >> right here. yes. >> mr. chairman, just to follow up on your comments on obama care, are you suggesting then that you are going to have an alternative ready to go, if you will, once the supreme court rules and if so can you give us a little preview of what you have in mind? >> boy i sure so. but i've hoped so for the last four or five years. as i mentioned, the principles
of healthcare that the vast majority of the american people, regardless of your ideological standing or position, the vast people support principles that say we ought to have a system that provides for greater afraid ability for health care greater accessibility, greater quality of care and more choices for the american people. almost everybody believes in that. the problem that we have right now is what the president has put in place with this law is something that violates every single one of those principles. so affordability is going down. costs haven't come down by $2500 a family they have gone up at least that on average per family. accessibility has gone down. you've heard of the narrowing of networks. physicians -- patients aren't able to find abscessability with physicians. quality is decreasing. talk to my former colleagues, they will tell you that the quality of health care in this country is being diminished
because of the law and choices are clearly limited. if you step back and say we want to put in place a policy that would adhere to those principles, what does it look like. it looks like something we need to make sure it's affordable. we need to expand to make sure they gain coverage in all sorts of ways. those individuals in the small group market truly threatened by increasing cost and pre-existing illness exclusion that has existed, those folks need to be able to access a risk pool, insurance risk pool large enough to spread the risk so their costs come down, don't go up. i think we need to say to folks any health care policy you purchase approved by your state insurance commissioner or state insurance department. anyone they deem to be appropriate coverage you should have access to. we ought not to dictate from washington what you can buy,
through your pocket book. quality matters need to be decided in the field of medicine not bureaucrats in washington, d.c. choices need to be expansive for patients. so if you step back and accept those principles as principle for the american people, you pretty much have a clear path to what the policies would be. >> right here. >> dr. price, should you win on obama care, at least two responses, one to congress, change the law. that will be up to you. they will also go to the state and say lots of people are losing subsidies, please set up the exchange and we can start the subsidy money flowing again. what would be your advice to the states, 35 or 40 states pressured by the obama administration? should they ask for complete
freedom on medicaid spending? what should they ask for? they shouldn't say set up and not negotiate. >> the mental to the states is there's a better way. there's a way that respects your constituents and citizens of your state to make certain we follow principles so dear to americans with health care. medicaid, we believe state flexibility is an absolute vital component. in my state of georgia, there are about 1.8 million on medicaid. 1.2 million of those folks are healthy moms and kids for whom health care costs are miniscule compared to the system. we don't allow the state of georgia, as a federal government, don't allow the state of georgia to come up with a more realistic way to cover all the medicaid population there by saving money for sickest of the sick. huge flexibility is important. indiana is doing great things as it relates to medicaid. we ought to be able to have the
states be laboratory of ideas when it comes to health care coverage for medicaid population. so the message is there's a better way. and we believe we are going to be able to get to that point. i think the president is actually going to be open to a better way. we're not interested in just having the states turn around and say we'll set up the exchange when we're encumbered by rules and regulations from washington, d.c. nothing will change from the day before the decision is given if given in favor to the day after as it relates to the states and the decision they made two or three years ago when they said, no, it didn't make sense to set up an exchange. it doesn't. it doesn't have a financial standpoint and from who makes decisions and who has choices to make decisions. >> right here. >> thank you. congratulations on your new position, doctor. >> thank you. >> you said you want to bring
down the debt. you said $2.6 trillion of the $3.6 trillion budget is in medicaid medicare, social security and interest. you also said you want to save, strengthen and secure these three programs, these entitlement programs. >> yes. >> so my question would be where are you looking to find the savings? are personal retirpts on the table for social security? vouchers to buy insurance and medicaid? where will you cut if the goal is to save and strengthen and secure those programs that are costing? >>s that's where the good news lies. that is these programs, medicare, medicaid and social security, all of them are destined to go bankrupt on their current course with the current policies. and again as i mentioned, apparently our friends on the other side want them to do so because they haven't proposed anything to save any programs.
the good news is you can strengthen, save and secure them and save money at the same time. the model that we have proposed for saving and strengthening and securing medicare actually covers more individuals, saves money for the individual and saves money for the federal government at the same time you respect the principles providing greater choices and higher quality of care for seniors. why would you turn your back on that? it astounds me friends on the left say i see that would make more sense. you spend less higher quality care and greater choices for the american people. we don't want to do that. we want to make sure we continue to control the system. medicaid, state flexibility huge state flexibility actually saves money. a more predictable line item for the federal government, a more predictable for state government provides better choices for patients higher quality of care, greater access to care. we as a federal government says oh, no let's don't do that.
this is lunacy. in the areas of social security, it has, indeed, been the third rail as tim mentioned. i'm hopeful what the budget will do is normalize discussion and debate about social security. this is a program right now on its current course will not be able to provide 75 or 80% of benefits individuals have paid into in a relatively short period of time. that's not a responsible position to say oh, you don't need to do anything to it. so all the kinds of things you know about, whether it's means tested increasing the age of eligibility, the kind of choices, providing much greater choices for individuals to have voluntarily, select the kind of matter they believe they should be able to invest their working dollars as they go through their lifetime. all those things ought to be on the table and discussed. again, that's why i'm so excited
by the new members on the committee because they have great enthusiasm and energy on this issue. >> any other questions?" right here in the back. [ inaudible ] >> is mitt romney the kind of person you would want to have for budgeting in the oval office or is there someone you would like to keep working with? >> anyone i've heard running on the republican side is a better one than we have right now in the oval office. [ applause ] >> of the choices you have -- >> what i'm hopeful we're able to do at the budget committee is lay out that vision and have it be so exciting and so positive and so productive that whoever is able to succeed through the gauntlet of the nomination process on the republican side looks to the budget committee and looks to the house and said those are the kinds of policies that i support and that will take to the american people. >> thank you, congressman. >> thank you so much.
take care. god bless. [ applause ] >> okay. thank you congressman price. great stuff. now i'd like to introduce two panelists, we're going to have a conversation about all the things we just heard and what we might be able to expect in 2015 budget wise. grover herman fellow in budgetary affairs here at the heritage foundation and will be our point person on these issues. jason is the senior research fellow at the me rca das center and works on those issues. thanks for coming up to the stage. please welcome them. we'll have a 30-minute conversation here and then break. >> okay. thank you. i've asked both to giveao brief opening remarks and then we'll open it up for questions. would you begin? >> thank you for the introduction, tim. thank you all for being here
today. i want to focus my remarks on how the new congress can control government spending and reduce waste. so i'm so pleased to follow representative price with those remarks. the first thing that the house and senate have an opportunity to do now is agree on a budget resolution. that budget resolution needs to address growing spending and debt at its root. the current half a trillion dollar deficit of this year has been hailed as a great improvement but to the extent that it is an improvement, it is a very fleeting one, indeed, because before the end of the decade, the deficit is projected to exceed trillion dollar levels again. so in order to rein in this growing deficit, it's important to know what's driving it and control